Sports Network) – Travis Hafner hit a three-run homer in a five-run fifth inning, as the Cleveland Indians earned a 6-3 win over the Detroit Tigers in the opener of a three-game series at Progressive Field.
Matt LaPorta and Luke Carlin hit solo homers in the fifth for Cleveland, which has won four straight.
Carlos Carrasco (2-1) worked six innings, allowing three runs on 11 hits with one walk while striking out five in earning the win. Chris Perez recorded his 22nd save with a perfect ninth.
Austin Jackson went 2-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored for the Tigers, who had won eight of nine coming in. Jhonny Peralta added a run-scoring single in defeat.
Armando Galarraga (4-8) suffered the loss for allowing five runs on four hits with four walks in 4 2/3 innings. The right-hander did not strike out a batter.
“We finally broke loose against Galarraga, who has pitched very well against us,” said manager Manny Acta, whose Indians had not scored in 16 previous innings this year against the Tigers starter, including his infamous near- perfect game on June 2.
Peralta’s two-out single to left in the third and Jackson’s RBI base hit in the fourth put the Tigers ahead 2-0.
LaPorta’s leadoff homer in the fifth — the Indians’ first hit of the game — and a one-out shot by Carlin tied things.
The Tribe weren’t finished as Michael Brantley doubled and Shin-Soo Choo worked a two-out walk before Hafner jumped on a 1-0 changeup and crushed it into the right-field seats for a 5-2 Cleveland lead that ended Galarraga’s outing.
Jackson got a run back for the Tigers in the sixth with a sacrifice fly, but Asdrubal Cabrera’s run-scoring double in the seventh restored Cleveland’s three-run edge.
Tony Sipp and Perez worked a perfect eighth and ninth, respectively, to close out the 6-3 victory.
“We couldn’t get any hits to break anything open. We had some chances but we couldn’t take advantage of them,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said.
Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera left the game in the top of the seventh after turning his right ankle while getting back to first on a throw from catcher Carlin…Cleveland outfielder Trevor Crowe went 1-for-4 and extended his career-high hitting streak to 13 games…Despite the loss, Detroit is 9-7 against Cleveland this season.